Restorative Justice

at post-sentencing level supporting and protecting victims

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Restorative Justice at post-sentencing level; supporting and protecting victims



1.1.2013 – 31.12.2014




Schleswig-Holstein Association for Social Responsibility in Criminal Justice, Victim and Offender Treatment




Kiel University of Applied Sciences (University)


Northelbian Evangelical-Lutheran Church (NGO)




UK-Thames Valley Probation (NGO)


UK-Thames Valley Partnership (NGO)


Croatia-University of Zagreb/Faculty of Law (University)


Catalonia General Direction for Probation and Juvenile Justice (GO)


Catalonia AGI Foundation (NGO)


Portugal Associacao de Mediadores de Conflitos (NGO) until 03/2014

Instituto Superior de Ciências Sociais e Políticas – Universidade de Lisboa/ School of Social and Political Sciences – Lisbon University



Katholieke University Leuven (University)



Associate Partners:

Ministry of Justice, Culture Issues and European Affairs Schleswig-Holstein (GO)



Max Planck Institute for Foreign and International Criminal Law in Freiburg i. Br., Germany (University)


Czech Republic-Probation Mediation Service (NGO)





European Forum for Restorative Justice (NGO)


Ministry of Justice and Consumer Protection of Rhineland-Palatinate (GO)

Victim Support UK (NGO)

Ispočetka (NGO), new name: Crime Suppression and Re-socialization Initiative - CSRI, Bosnia and Herzegovina



Project Aims:

A new directive (2011) of the European Parliament and the Council proposes the “establishment of minimum standards on the rights, support and protection of victims of crime”. More precisely, this demands the establishment of safeguards and standards to prevent secondary victimization in the context of mediation and other Restorative Justice services (sect.12). This project aims to address those issues by minimising the chances of secondary victimization while promoting that all victims of crime have a right to access Restorative Justice (RJ). In order to implement these interests, the project searches for mechanisms to assure that RJ is only used in the interest of victims. There is a limited offer of RJ at post-sentencing level in the partner countries, despite the fact that often especially victims of more serious crimes are in need of closure. While, particularly at this stage of the system, victims may have greatest trust in the measure, not solely feeling as a means to the mitigation of a sentence. The project focuses on prison settings but does not exclude other post-sentencing measures. The priority “supporting victims of crime” is addressed by balancing the intended target of providing all kinds of victims with the option to participate in RJ while offering support and protection.



An action research approach, based on a qualitative methodology, will allow approaching the field of RJ practice in prison which is new to some project partners. Work shall be carried out focusing on dialog and in a process-oriented manner with close interconnection between theory and practice. Action research methodology enables creative search for the best possible implementation of RJ methods at prison settings for diversity of cases and within different legal and institutional frameworks. Three conferences are a methodological means for diagnoses and to gain substantial theoretical knowledge on the status quo and best practice of RJ in prison settings in the partner countries. Study Visits shall promote the exchange between practitioners. Action planning will reveal which RJ method is most suitable for the setting of individual institutions and partner countries. These can include pilot projects of victim offender mediation, conferencing, victim empathy training, victim groups, guided visits for victims in prison, victim offender dialog and other methods or a combination of the such. These will be qualitative evaluated through observation and guided interviews with victims, aiming at further in-depth knowledge on their needs and expectations. These findings will form the essential basis for the development of safeguards in the form of guidelines for practitioners and related training material. Through this approach we expect to motivate decision makers and practitioners in providing Restorative Justice to all those affected by a crime.



  • Three Project Conferences (Barcelona, Oxford, Kiel)
  • Study Visits for Practitioners in the Partner Countries
  • RJ - Pilot Projects
  • Training of Practitioners



With the financial support from the Criminal Justice Programme of the European Union. The contents of this publication are the sole responsibilty of "Schleswig-Holsteinischer Verband für soziale Strafrechtpflege; Straffälligen- und Opferhilfe e.V" and can in no way be taken to refect the views of the European Commission.